Conservative MP Mark Pritchard says those who abuse their UK visas should be banned from the country for 20 years.
23 April 2013
Politician pushes for 20 year ban on UK visa abusers
Conservative politician Mark Pritchard has suggested banning those who abuse UK visa allowances from the UK for 20 years.
Mr Pritchard said non-EU migrants who overstay their UK visa validity periods should be given a chance to 'regularise' their visa status - by leaving the country for a year - or face being banned from the country for 20 years.
"Those who regularise their status will be rewarded. Those who continue to abuse their status will receive a sanction," the MP for The Wrekin said during a debate in Parliament.
Mr Pritchard said UK immigration had played a vital part in the UK's 'national narrative' and immigrants had benefitted the UK in economic and cultural terms but levels of abuse meant steps needed to be taken.
The MP said his proposals were 'hard-headed sanctions' which would incentivise people to ensure they had the correct immigration status; those whose statuses were not correct should be deported.
Mr Pritchard's comments were influenced by an online petition calling for existing controls on non-EU migrants - specifically Bulgarian and Romanian migrants - to be strengthened, particularly in light of the prospect of current restrictions on the two countries being lifted at the end of the year.
The UK Visa Bureau is an independent immigration consultancy specialising in helping people prepare for their UK Ancestry Visa application.